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Sentence Correction Questions: Overview

Is the following TRUE or FALSE regarding Sentence Correction questions ?

Ambiguity is a grammatical mistake and should thus always be corrected.

False.

Ambiguity is a stylistic mistake, and while we aspire to find an answer choice that is both grammatically correct and stylistically correct, we sometimes have to choose between two imperfect answer choices, one which is grammatically incorrect and one which is ambiguous.

Example: 1. Employers often tell workers that they need to focus on the bottom line.

              2. Employers often tells worker that management needs to focus on the bottom line. 

Sentence 1 is grammatically correct but ambiguous - it is not entirely clear whether they refers to Employers or to workers. Sentence 2 is grammatically incorrect but unambiguous. Sentence 1 could be a correct answer to a Sentence Correction question, whereas sentence 2 could NEVER EVER be the correct answer to a Sentence Correction question.

You're right!

Ambiguity is a stylistic mistake, not a grammatical one.

While we aspire to find an answer choice that is both grammatically correct and stylistically correct, we sometimes have to choose between two imperfect answer choices, one which is grammatically incorrect and one which is ambiguous.

Example: 1. Employers often tell workers that they need to focus on the bottom line.

               2. Employers often tells worker that management needs to focus on the bottom line. 

Sentence 1 is grammatically correct but ambiguous - it is not entirely clear whether they refers to Employers or to workers. Sentence 2 is grammatically incorrect but unambiguous. Sentence 1 could be a correct answer to a Sentence Correction question, whereas sentence 2 could NEVER EVER be the correct answer to a Sentence Correction question.

The correct answer is FALSE because ambiguity is a stylistic mistake, not a grammatical one. In other words, it is not incorrect to use ambiguous sentences in English, it's just a preference of style adopted on the GMAT where they like it clear and easy to read.

while we aspire to find an answer choice that is both grammatically correct and stylistically correct, we sometimes have to choose between two imperfect answer choices, one which is grammatically incorrect and one which is ambiguous.

Example: 1. Employers often tell workers that they need to focus on the bottom line.

               2. Employers often tells worker that management needs to focus on the bottom line. 

Sentence 1 is grammatically correct but ambiguous - it is not entirely clear whether they refers to Employers or to workers. Sentence 2 is grammatically incorrect but unambiguous. Sentence 1 could be a correct answer to a Sentence Correction question, whereas sentence 2 could NEVER EVER be the correct answer to a Sentence Correction question.

True
False

I don't know